Vatican City (AsiaNews) - Those who judge others, who slander others, who imitate "this prince of this world" shall be judged by "the same measure", but will be able to count on Jesus' defence, Pope Francis said during the Mass he celebrated this morning at Domus Sanctae Marthae, in his commentary on today's Gospel passage about the splinter and the beam in the eye.
"Those who judge others are wrong to do so," Vatican Radio quoted the pope as saying. "Eventually, God will judge them in the same way. Only God is our sole judge".
Jesus' accusation of "hypocrite," Pope Francis points out, is addressed to the scribes but is in fact for anyone who hastily judges others. "God," on the other hand, said the pontiff, "takes his time" when handing down judgment.
For this reason, "The person who judges," the Pope explained, "is wrong, and mistaken. [. . .] He who does this is so obsessed with the person he wants to judge - that person - so, so obsessed! That the splinter will not let him sleep! 'But I want to take away the splinter!'... And he does not notice the log that he, himself has."
"Such a person confuses the splinter for a beam. He confuses reality. He is fantasizing. And he who judges becomes a loser, ends up badly, because the same measure will be used to judge him."
"Only God, and those of his choosing, have the right to judge," the pope as he emphasised that "Jesus was an example to follow."
"Jesus, before the Father, never accuses! It is the opposite: he defends! He is the first Paraclete. Then, he sends the second, who is the (Holy) Spirit. He is the defender: he comes before the Father to defend us against the charges."
In the Bible, the Pope noted, the "accuser" is the devil, Satan. "Jesus will judge, yes, at the end of the world but in the meantime, he intercedes, defends. [. . .] Ultimately, he who judges is an imitator of the prince of this world, always behind people to accuse them before the Father."
Instead, the Holy Father called on the faithful to "imitate Jesus: intercessor, advocate, lawyer; not just for ourselves, but for others too. [. . .] Ddo not imitate others, which in the end will destroy us".
"If we want to follow the way of Jesus," the Pope said in concluding, "more than accusers, we have to be defenders of others before the Father. I see a bad thing in someone - do I go defend him? No! But keep quiet! Go pray and defend him before the Father as Jesus does. Pray for him, and judge not! Because if you do, when you do something bad, you shall be judged. Let us remember this well; it will do us good in everyday life when we get the urge to judge others, to speak ill of others, which is a form of judging."